From Siobhan and Alexandra: Guys, get excited: No More Dirty Looks has its first permanent outside contributor!
You all know her already. Her name is Rebecca Bailey and she’s been beasting in the comments section for ages. As such, she’s become a super important part of this community. We have a hard time imagining the site without her and we (like you) always want more, more, more. So we asked her to start a column.
Here’s why: She’s incredibly knowledgeable and is always quick to help out readers with their conundrums. She’s smart about beauty, and thoughtful about lifestyle, and her candor and insight sort of…keeps us going! When we aren’t sure if a post was too off-topic or weird, there’s Rebecca weighing in thoughtfully. Plus, she’s a product whiz and a DIY woman with so much to share. So please join us in welcoming her.
Here’s her first amazing post, featuring 5 products we have not yet tried—but now want to. She’ll be here every two weeks.
Since childhood, I’ve had sensitive skin. My lips in particular are a mess if I try to use conventional products. Do you want to hear about the pain and the oozing? No, you don’t. I spent decades thinking I simply could not wear lip color. Enter the NMDL girls and my introduction to truly clean cosmetics. Now, anyone can be sensitive to any ingredient, even clean stuff.
But if the brands I’m about to review are OK for me they will probably be OK for 99% of people.
In addition to being sensitive, I’m super picky about smell/taste/texture, and I like my products to add something nourishing to my skin. These don’t taste all “lipsticky,” they feel nice on, wear well, and have healthy plant oils, antioxidants and many organic ingredients. I also like packaging to be both pretty and functional. Check.
I love my RMS, and I own just about every lip product they make. But the brand has been discussed often here so I wanted to review a few brands that I don’t see much about. Everything I’m covering is super clean, gluten free, and mostly vegan (a couple products have beeswax). For reference, I have a very pale olive complexion, but I think most of these colors would work for many skin tones.
- Real Purity Lipstick Great price ($13), gorgeous and functional packaging, and the color selection is spectacular. My favorites this time of year are Dusty Mauve and Tangerine. Dusty Mauve is a really unique color with a bit of purple and some luminosity, and it wears longer than any lip color I’ve ever tried. The shimmer makes it look fairly pale in bright light, but in dim light it looks darker. If, like me, you are both intrigued by and fear orange, then try Tangerine. It is shimmery sheer, subtle and lovely. Into reds? Try Regal Red (looks bright pink on me) and Clover Red (bam! red with a touch of orange). The sample program makes it fun and easy to try them out.
- 100% Pure Lip Glaze These are something between a gloss and a lipstick, somewhat shiny but not too much, enough color but not super saturated. Only $15 and adorably packaged, silver-bullet style. This company uses fruit pigments, so their stuff tastes and smells fruity at first, but it wears off to neutral pretty fast. They are local for me so I tried almost everything in their Oakland boutique, and bought Fig. Nice and creamy, kind of gives a little something extra to my natural lip color, with a bit of shine.
- 100% Pure Lip Creamsticks These are big, fat pencils with creamy color ($15). They are dual function, liners or all-over color. I like that you can be precise in application if you keep it sharp. I have Perfect Naked Berry. It’s so pretty.
- INIKA Mineral Lipstick This one is more expensive ($27), but I could not resist. I have Tuscan Tales, which is a terra cotta shade I’ve not seen elsewhere. It’s in a simple, elegant tube, and feels moisturizing even though it has a more matte finish than most lipsticks. I sense something special here, I think it’s made by fairies.* I’d love to try more from this brand but I haven’t found a way to do samples yet.
- Afterglow Lip Love Lipstick This is another brand that I wish had a good sample program so I could try more colors ($24 for a tube). I bought Autumn, a very pretty auburn red, which I love. I also have Merlot, which is an altogether different thing from the rest on this list. It looks crazy dark in the tube. I find I really must blot with a tissue and then it turns out much like a beet stain, but with more staying power.
Have you tried any lesser known brands that are fabulous?
*I have no actual evidence that it is made by fairies.
Weekly! We said weekly! And we meant it. So now, here is the latest in our weekly series of women sharing exactly what products they use to start the day. This time, we asked the amazing Rebecca B. to share hers. You no doubt know her from the comments. She’s an early and loyal reader who shares her insane breadth of knowledge and experience with all of you, all the time. We learn from her, we think she’s sassy and funny, and we imagine you all do too. Also, she uses great products—and some we’ve never even heard of! Read on, read on…
Current weather: sunny, warm, dry
Hair: multi-texture, thick but not so much as it used to be, lots of grey covered with henna/indigo, growing out the toxic dye
Skin: pale, super sensitive and perimenopause ravaged, but pretty good with optimal care
Before the shower…
100% Pure Coffee Bean Eye Cream goes on first thing when I get out of bed if I have puffiness. The puffy is usually gone by the time I get into the shower. Every day there’s yoga, a healthy nutrient-packed but light breakfast, and add a walk, run or bike a few days a week.
I love my products, truly, but I know that my fitness and nutrition do more for beauty than anything else. I also love to dry brush my skin but lately it’s been sporadic.
In the shower…
I brush my teeth with Miessence toothpaste in anise or lemon (is it weird that I brush in the shower?). If it’s a shampoo day, I use Griffin Remedy Daily Shampoo and the matching conditioner, or Elava Botanik Avocado Shampoo (conditioner typically not needed with that one). Choice of soap for the essential-to-wash parts based on mood or need: Rose of Sharon Acres Coconut Milk Shampoo and Body Bar (great for shaving), skinnyskinny Organic Real Cocoa, One With Nature Dead Sea Mud Soap, or Dr. Bronner’s. Kahina Giving Beauty Facial Cleanser is my go-to, all time fave for face. Sometimes I use honey, and lately I’ve added some dead sea mud soap for the hormonal break-out areas (too drying for my whole face on a regular basis). For exfoliating, I use a Pai muslin cloth or gluten-free steel cut oats.
Outside the shower…
For my face/neck/chest, I pick a toner from my ever-expanding collection. Lately it’s likely to be John Masters Lavender Hydrating Mist or Evan Healy Immortelle Facial Tonic Hydrosol. I massage in Kahina Argan Oil with my DIY skin lightening actives mix. This has drastically helped my sun damaged areas, and the massaging part (I heard of it as “face yoga”) is to help with muscle tone—I think it’s working, but maybe that’s just wishful thinking. If my eyes need something extra, it’s more 100% Pure Coffee Bean, or Pai Rejuvenating Echium Eye Cream. Hair gets Kahina argan and/or John Masters Bourbon Vanilla and Tangerine Texturizer (oh, yeah, baby), usually after a blow-dry and sometimes a flat iron. If it’s a curly day I use a DIY sea salt spray. If I didn’t shampoo but need a refresher, I go for Lulu Organics Hair Powder. I use straight lavender essential oil patted all over my body (it’s the only thing that keeps me from getting daily bug bites). Lavender also goes on any inflamed face spots, and it’s a nice blast of fragrance for underarms too, on days I want scent. I love Soapwalla deodorant, but lately I’ve been using my own unscented mix of shea/arrowroot/kaolin/baking soda. I always have some sort of body butter for whatever needs it, like elbows or feet. Currently I’m using my favorite Sprout cream. My lips love Meadowlake Farm Hive Isolates Renewing Salve.
RMS Beauty uncover-up on spots, with Alima Pure Satin Matte Foundation over that and also under my eyes. My finishing powder is a DIY mix of my foundation with arrowroot, kaolin and rice powder. Sometimes I use Alima blush and Real Purity mascara. RMS Living Luminizer goes on upper lids, on lips and/or cupid’s bow, and whatever’s left I pat onto my collar bones. If it’s a no mascara day the luminizer goes on lashes too. Then body butter for hands and I’m out the door.
Boom! How’s that for a morning routine? Weigh in with your favorites from her routine, or what you learned about and can’t wait to try, in the comments.